Rafa Benitez Reportedly Favorite to Take Charge of Chelsea Until End of Season

Joe TanseyFeatured ColumnistNovember 21, 2012

LECCE, ITALY - NOVEMBER 10:  Rafael Benitez, head coach of Inter Milan during the Serie A match between Lecce and Inter Milan at Stadio Via del Mare on November 10, 2010 in Lecce, Italy.  (Photo by Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images)
Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images

After Tuesday's loss in the Champions League to Juventus, Chelsea sacked manager Roberto Di Matteo.

Once the sacking of the Italian reached the press, speculation began to run rampant about who would be the next man to take charge at Stamford Bridge.

That man will most likely be former Liverpool and Inter Milan boss Rafael Benitez.

Benitez is believed to be the favorite to take over the Blues for the rest of the season.  

The 52-year-old Spaniard is no stranger to managing in the EPL, as he was in charge of Liverpool for six years before and he left the Merseyside club for Inter in the summer of 2010.

Benitez's stay at Inter only lasted six months, as he was sacked two days before Christmas in 2010 after Inter had slipped down the Serie A table to sixth place.

Benitez is also a coach who knows how to win in Europe by winning the 2004 UEFA Cup with Valencia before winning the 2005 Champions League final in dramatic fashion with Liverpool.

However, the potential temporary move for Benitez is not going over well with the club's fans.

This BBC Sport report talked to the chair of the Chelsea Supporters Group, Trizia Fiorellino, who believes Benitez is not the man for the job.

If Benitez were to take the Chelsea job, it would be on an interim basis, as Chelsea manager Roman Abramovich is waiting for former Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola to become his next manager over the summer.

According to the Daily Mail, Guardiola was approached by Abramovich last month after Chelsea lost to Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League, but the man who guided Barcelona to 11 titles in four seasons remains on his sabbatical from coaching in New York with is family.

Guardiola is the man Abramovich wants to manage his club, but with that becoming less likely to happen this season, Benitez would be used as an interim manager until Abramovich can bring in Guardiola this summer.